BOOK TITLE: Sunborn Rising: Beneath the Fall
AUTHOR: Aaron Safronoff
GENRE: Fiction / Fantasy Adventure
NUMBER OF PAGES: 385
FORMAT: Digital / Gifted Kindle
SERIES / STANDALONE: Sunborn Rising #1
HOW I GOT THIS BOOK: I thank Laura Fabiani of iRead Book Tours for this review copy!
"Sunborn Rising: Beneath the Fall is the best vivid fantasy YA book of the year." --Entrada Publishing
On a distant world of forests floating on an ocean around a star,
a blight threatens to plunge all life into darkness.
But three friends seek the light.
Together, they will Fall and be lost.
And at the very Root of darkness, they will find themselves.
But will it be enough to help them find their way home?
The world of Cerulean
Light and water flow from the ocean into the roots of the Great Trees, up through the boughs, and out over the lush canopy. But the once vibrant treescape has grown dim over generations of arboreal life, and the creatures of the forest have forgotten the light.
Barra, a young, willful Listlespur, finds her late father's hidden journal, and reads about the old world and the mysterious plague her father believed destroyed it. He wrote that he warned the Elders. He urged them to take action. Those were his last words.
Together with her two best friends, Barra will explore every bark, wood, and leaf of the Great Forest to relight her world and complete her father's story, even if she has to travel beneath the Fall.
Sunborn Rising - the title and the cover are an amazing combination that lured me to pick this book. A single tail threaded with what looked like baubles (though it took me some time to work that out) and the overall blue theme attracted me. The summary seemed a bit common for a book from this genre, but the word 'illustrations' got me involved and I thoroughly looked forward to reading it.
I believe that we’ve been in the dark for so long, and no one questions it…
The book began with a young Listlespur going into a sacred space that is her father's study. She finds a journal that totally shatters the images she had of her father, shifting her axis of truth. She finds the details of a plague her father had predicted and from there the story holds me with a gripping intensity about something as simple as a Creepervine - rendered much more horrific with each passing descriptive line. The rest, as they say, is quite how the story is expected to go. The young Barra joins hands with her friends and explores the world to find out and if possible avert or correct what her father feared. To finish what her father began, Barra begins her own exciting journey.
The book is dotted with an interesting storyline. There are many moments where I am quite drawn into the narrative, often wondering if the book might actually suit 'all ages' as it proclaims. Most passages do not seem like they are written for kids or pre teens (and that does NOT mean that the book achieves this through use of violence and profanity or sexual content). The writing simply is manages to be both mature and simple to understand throughout the book and thankfully maintains an even pace. If you do manage to get into Barra's world, the writing holds you back enough to have the urge to know what happens next.
The major plus point of the book is the abundant use of illustrations. They bring to life the characters and help associate the shapes with the descriptions. This is actually essential for a fantasy novel that involves characters of a different species where it is left to the user's imagination to know whether a particular character looks like they thought it would. The illustrations help a great deal in bringing us into the world that is described in the book.
The writing, illustrations and overall narration draw you into a story that is quite commonplace, taking on the formulaic approach of this genre. Read this book, not only for the artwork and writing, but if you really want a nice story that really spikes your interest in this genre as a whole. For those who have read many fantasy adventure books earlier, this book has something new to offer. Give it a try and you won't regret it!
WHAT I LIKED:
- The beautiful illustrations - they add value to the already interesting story.
- The writing is near perfect - it draws the reader in, making sure they keep turning the pages.
- The words are deep - often memorable and help in going through a predictable story line
WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN BETTER:
- Follows the stereotypes of the genre - doom befalling a world and young hero / sidekicks defending is mainstream now
- The story and characters are predictable at instances
- If you discount the amazing illustrations and writing, there really is nothing new to read
Another fantasy series - but with beautiful illustrations that bring the world live to you.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Aaron Safronoff is author of the Discovery Award winning science fiction novel, Spire. Since his debut, he's published a sequel, Fallen Spire, and a novella of literary fiction, Evening Breezes.
Safronoff's diverse background includes the formal study of computer science, bio-chemistry, and culinary arts. However, most of his career has been in the videogame industry in quality, production, and design.
Today, Safronoff is the co-founder and Chief Storyteller of Neoglyphic Entertainment, and is busy writing his fifth novel, the second installment of the Sunborn Rising series.
EDITIONS AVAILABLE: Kindle, Paperback, Hardcover
PRICE $24.99 for Hardcover, $.9.82 for Paperback, free on Kindle
BOOK LINKS: https://www.amazon.com/Sunborn-Rising-Beneath-Aaron-Safronoff/dp/1944606009